Types and Styles of Roof Shingles

Roofing shingles protect homes from the elements and offer a stylistic element that crowns the beautiful structure below. It's important to choose the right building supply, including shingles, as different materials are better suited to certain properties.

Remember that you can shop for discount building materials in Atlanta so that you have a good supply of shingles for a variety of roof installation and replacement projects. This is a good general guide to the most common types of shingles, their benefits, and any drawbacks of using them.


Affordable and easy-to-install with simple roofing staples, fiberglass or organic asphalt shingles are common in many homes. Many meet EnergyStar standards so that you can install a green roof.

Even better, asphalt is designed to resemble other materials, like wood or slate. However, most asphalt shingles are not resistant to extreme weather conditions.

Fiberglass asphalt shingles are available at most builders’ supply outlets. They're designed to be lightweight, fire-resistant, and sunlight resistant.

The organic variety, meanwhile, are made of recycled materials, which may appeal to some clients. They're heavier than fiberglass, but are not as long-lasting and water-resistant.


Tile shingles are stylish and unique, and can be designed in different molds and colors. They stay cool in warm temperatures and last for up to 80 years. However, they're pricier than asphalt. They can develop cracks or leaks, and may need frequent maintenance.

Also, installation is difficult. You cannot use ordinary roofing nails to install tile shingles.


Wood shingles are average-priced shingles that are durable and energy-efficient. They are typically made of real cedar or redwood, which are naturally beautiful and colorful. However, they're the least fire-resistant material and are highly prone to rot and termite attacks, even if properly treated.

That being said, their beauty and style versatility are unrivaled. They're recommended for wealthier clients because of the maintenance costs, including occasional power washing or shingle replacements.


Contemporary and cool, metal roofs are more popular than ever. They're recommended for steep or flat roofs, and can be made of various types of metals. These shingles are durable and come with extreme longevity.

However, metal shingles require close care. They're also extremely noisy on rainy or snowy days. they may also require occasional nail replacements. Holes and rust can develop, even when moisture-treated.  


The champions of longevity, slate shingles have been known to last up to 100 years. They're water and damage resistant, and can even handle frigid temperatures. However, slate shingles have very few color and style options.

They're pricey to purchase, install, and repair, especially because many roofers are unfamiliar with slate and can't work with it. You should also know that slate is extremely heavy. Roofs may require reinforcement or repairs before slate is installed on them.

They may be hard to find, too, but some outlets that carry discount building materials in Atlanta offer slate, as well as the other shingle varieties.